I have a wireless card in my (Vista) laptop and mostly just use it on my home wireless network.
I am now traveling and have spent a couple nights in different hotels with "wireless internet".
In the first hotel I believe it was their problem.
In the second location I was able to connect to the hotel's router but not able to get an internet connection. The lobby said to log in with "guest" and "guest" (ID/PW). But I couldn't figure out how to get a logon screen. And I didn't care much so I didn't try much.
Tonight I had the same problem (although this time they gave me an ID and PW that made it appear like they actually managed their network to some degree).
I mucked around with all the connection, diagnose, disconnect/reconnect options that I could find. One finally let me to a URL specific to (from what I can tell) whoever built this network. I could access this URL (despite not being connected to the internet), typed in the ID/PW, and all worked fine. I'm guessing that this URL was actually 'hosted' by the wireless router.
Now for the question - what is the normal procedure for logging onto semi-public networks like you find in a hotel (when they require ID/PW)?